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Kerala Floods – Lessons to Be Learned from the Disaster

The floods that ravaged Kerala in August 2018 not only took lives but also destroyed thousands of homes and businesses, left lakhs of people under the serious danger of diseases and epidemics, and caused financial damage that will take close to 5 years for the state to fully recover from.

If there is anything we can learn from the deadly earthquake in Latur or Gujarat, from the devastating floods in Mumbai or Chennai, or from the tsunami that hit Southern India, it is that life on planet Earth is unpredictable and being prepared is the only way to ensure you or your family do not get permanently affected by such natural disasters that give little or no warning and cause severe damage to your home, health, and/or life.

So, how do we protect ourselves when such natural disasters occur?

Life Insurance / Term Insurance

Life insurance and term insurance policies cover your life in cases of natural disasters and acts of God. The nature of these policies is such that they provide for your family in case you are unable to. In the case of term insurance, you can even opt for your family to receive monthly pay-outs instead of lump sum pay-outs so that even after you are gone, they will not stop receiving monthly income like they used to receive your monthly salary.

Health Insurance

For natural disasters that have a geographically large area of effect, experts say that the death toll rises a great deal close to a week or fortnight AFTER the disaster. This is not due to victims succumbing to injuries or due to starvation. The death toll rises due to the epidemics that inevitably spread after such natural disasters.

In the immediate aftermath of such disasters, many people are displaced and do not have a home to return to. They, therefore, live in rehabilitation camps. In such camps, the proximity of thousands of people, unclean water to drink and cook with, and unsafe sanitary measures lead to the outbreak of contagious water- and air-borne diseases that spread not only to the people living in the camp but everyone in the region.

In such a situation, having a health plan is a boon, as you may not have cash handy (banks may be closed and ATMs out of order), but you will always have your Mediclaim card, against which you can get cashless treatment at network hospitals.

Home Insurance

A comprehensive home insurance policy covers your home as well as your belongings from the dangers of theft, fire, rioting, breakages, and even damage caused due to natural disasters. Your home is the costliest thing you will own in your life, so ensure you get a comprehensive home insurance to protect not only your home but also your belongings.

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